Conflicting stories are swirling around the internet and the media about Richard Simmons, and whether he is free to come and go as he pleases. Simmons has not been seen publicly in two years, and many feel he is being controlled by the people in his life who claim to be in touch with him. His rep says that Simmons is just avoiding the public eye, but many will not be happy until they hear this from Simmons himself and not a “spokesman” saying that they speak for Simmons.
The New York Daily News broke the story that Simmons is frail and scared, and is in need of help. Friends who have not been able to make contact have tried desperately to see him, and they are the people who sounded the alarm that Simmons is in peril.
Simmons’ former masseur and friend, Mauro Oliveira, finally showed up at Simmons’ home unannounced out of concern that he could not make contact with the fitness guru. Out of the blue, Oliveira got a cryptic phone call from Simmons, and he made the trip to Simmons’ home. Simmons spoke quietly and told Oliveira that they could no longer be in contact.
“Mauro, we can no longer see each other,” Simmons told him in a quiet, defeated voice.
When Oliveira asked why, and what the problem was, Simmons continued to act oddly.
“I just want to be by myself, and I want to be in the house, and we’re never going to see each other again.”
Then it got even stranger when Oliveira said Simmons seemed stressed and he suggested a massage. Simmons seemed to need the permission of his housekeeper of 30 years, Teresa Reveles.
“No, no, no!” Reveles shouted from the second floor, according to Oliveira. “Get out! Get out!”
Simmons then admitted to Oliveira that Reveles was controlling his life.
Vanity Fair also raised the flag that Richard Simmons, who has been a cheerleader for so many down on their luck, needs someone to do the same for him. Friends are concerned that Simmons is being controlled by strong personalities and drugs. They are in charge of who he sees and where he is allowed to go. His one time palace of a home has become a gilded cage.
Several friends have explained that they were turned away at the door or the gate by Teresa Reveles and were not even able to see or speak to Simmons at all. In the times that Simmons has been seen in the last five years, he has been prone to sometimes violent mood swings, and the police have been called for a wellness check.
The Daily Mail is taking it to another level by saying that Simmons’ housekeeper, Teresa Reveles, is involved in black magic and witchcraft. Simmons was said to be vulnerable after a knee injury and the death of his beloved dog Hattie. Mauro Oliveira, who is Brazilian, says that from his culture, he recognizes the kind of control that Reveles is exerting over Simmons, and he believes it is based in evil.
“I think it was [caused by] black magic, witchcraft. That’s not close to your culture, but to my culture in Brazil, and to Mexicans, that is a real thing. They invoke the spirits.”
Whether or not you believe in such things, many do, and Oliveira believes that the power being used to control Simmons is Black Magic.
Former assistant claims Richard Simmons' maid is controlling him through black magic https://t.co/ZFJHs3sn0j— Daily Mail Celebrity (@DailyMailCeleb) March 13, 2016
USA Today is reporting that a representative for Simmons says he is fine, and just avoiding the public eye, but one of the people who spoke on his behalf in the past is the housekeeper Reveles, who is raising eyebrows with Simmons’ friends. Many will not be happy until Simmons makes a public statement, and in his own words, asks to be left alone. If it is truly his desire, this is the best way to make it happen.
Tom Estey, who has been representing Richard Simmons for some time, says that Simmons, though depressed from a serious knee injury and loss of a beloved pet, is choosing to be left alone. Estey says that overall, Simmons’ mental health is fine.
“I don’t want the readers of USA TODAY to think this man is a Howard Hughes recluse in his own home,” says Estey. “He’s just not.”
Estey did not comment on when he last saw Simmons, but many fans would prefer that Simmons make a public statement on his own, or have an independent professional check on him.
Do you think the situation surrounding Richard Simmons sounds right to you, or do you think he is being taken advantage of?
[Photo by Ilya Savenok/Getty Images]